Saturday, 2 January 2016


Otaru Canal
Otaru is a about a 45 minute train ride from Sapporo. The early start to our day trip saw us walking past the very long line of people waiting for Daimaru to open!

The line waiting for Daimaru to open! It went down all the way past the line of sight!

Blue skies graced us briefly as we walked towards Otaru Canal. A small part of the Canal was restored which we visited. As we headed towards Sakaimachi Street, a preserved merchant street a short walk from the Canal, rain began to pelt down alternating with snow. When faced with miserable weather, one consumed ice-cream, 8 layers of it in different flavours.

Made it to the Canal for a photo!

Sakaimachi Street

Oma and Opa bought a 6 layer ice-cream for themselves

The 8 layer! Flavours included lavender, apple, rockmelon, Hokkaido milk, green tea and more

Another 8 layer in a cup. Just how much ice-cream could a family eat? A lot apparently

The dismal weather validated our visit to Kitakaro even more! Kitakaro is well known for its cream puff and the Baumkuchen (a cake of German origin). Kitakaro sold 3 different types of cream puffs and we had to try all three. Their number 1 best seller is the Kita no yume Dome and it didn't disappoint! Choux pastry filled with the smoothest and richest cream and custard. The official description read "The jumbo cream puff delivers satisfaction from two generous layers of custard and fresh cream, which harmonise with each other." They were not kidding when they said generous. Cream puff heaven! Yume Fushigi was described as "The pastry is crisp. The filling is thick and smooth. It brings on a dream-like moment". It was good but not as good as the bestseller. Note that the third cream puff, Piscot, had a texture that was "astonishingly chewy". Whilst the filling was delicious, we weren't too sure about the chewy bun. Kitakaro had samples of the Baumkuchen to try. We decided to buy a green tea Baumkuchen to munch on. To our delight, they also had lucky bags which Malcolm snapped up quickly.


Cream puffs waiting for us!

The best seller

Just look at how much cream and custard you get!

Our second favourite

Our least favourite

Ready to take on some cream puff goodness!

Kitakaro lucky bag!

The goodies inside it

Green tea baumkuchen

We had to move on to Rokkatei, another famous Hokkaido patisserie. Their Marusei Butter Sand it is one of the most famouse Japanese snack only sold in Hokkaido and limited shops in Japan and it is the signature product of Rokkatei.  Crunch butter biscuits sandwiches a layer of raisin butter cream (the butter is made from 100% Hokkaido milk) mixed with white chocolate. We bought it, a coffee version as well as a one with quince in it. We later tried the latter and oh my goodness...we should have bought more!!! We randomly picked up a few more goodies but had to limit our purchases. The products has fresh dairy and so had a rather short consume-by date. Besides, we had one more stop to make...FYI, Rokkatei also sells cream puffs for 90 yen and you get free coffee if you buy and eat it at the cafe on the second floor.

Rokkatei just next door to Kitakaro

Looks rather plain

That thing sure does taste good!

LeTao, another popular Hokkaido confectionery company, is famous for its double fromage cheesecake, a mascarpone based no-bake cheesecake. Hurray shouted Elliot! We bought their number 1 bestseller which was sold frozen so we could bring it to share with our friends in Tomamu in 2 days.

We had 2 more stops to make while in Otaru. The first was Kitaichi Glass. When the herring fishing industry in Otaru declined in the 1950s, the makers of glass buoys shifted to the production of refined glassware instead. Otaru is now well known for glass manufacturing so glassware galore could be found. The Kitaichi Glass area has everything imaginable made of glass. Although I spend most of my time in a somewhat stressed state with nightmares of the children breaking something!

The next stop did not alleviate my stress levels. Orgel Doh Otaru Music Box Museum is one of Japan's largest music box shops, with many beautiful but delicate music boxes on display and for sale. The range truly was amazing with a myriad of different shapes and sizes, and different music options.

Music box museum and store

Our very late lunch was of course to eat the super fresh Hokkaido seafood. The servings were generous, the food cooked well and the taste superb! We rolled out to make our way back to Sapporo. We had enough time to venture into Daimaru! It was still incredibly busy but my parents finally managed to snag their first lucky bag, a Samsonite lucky bag! It was great way to end what was a great day.

Amazing seafood, generous serves and reasonable price. What more could one ask for!

One of their many combinations on rice

Lara's lunch. Big fat yummy prawns

Grilled giant scallops

Seafood ramen 

Samsonite lucky bag! In it was a samsonite backpack, an ipad messenger bag, and a memory foam travel pillow!


  1. How on earth did you manage to eat all those cream puffs on top of all that icecream? You have stronger stomachs than us - lol!

  2. How wonderful! It's been so long since I looked at your blog and I have lots of catching up to do but seriously this looks amazing!